Photoshop: Big issues with the payment system for Creative Cloud

  • 1
  • Problem
  • Updated 3 years ago
  • (Edited)
I was told by Adobe telephone support to post this here as there is nowhere else to do it.

– Here is the background:

I am a Creative Cloud business customer with a team subscription for my design company.

I have just come into work on a Monday morning and found an email sent to me from Adobe on Friday evening at 21.30 (outside office hours) saying that Adobe was unable to process payment for our 9-user Creative Cloud team subscription – it's not irrelevant to the issue, but it turned out that someone made a payment on our company credit card which meant there was not enough credit to take the CC payment, so it was declined.

Because of this payment problem, all my staff are now running on Trial versions of CC.

I then put in a different card for our subscription, but we all still remained on the Trial version.

I then called support and was told that it would take 24 hours for payment to go through and so we would remain on the trial versions until tomorrow.

– Here is the issue:

Had any of my staff used up their trial period previously, we would be locked out of our software altogether. There may well be some staff members, not in the office yet, who will experience this lock-out as they might have installed and used up the trial version of CC years ago, when we were using the disk-based CS5.

I am writing as I feel this is an unacceptable situation to put your business customers in. Had any of my staff used up their trial periods before, we could be losing up to £1000 ($1385) per user per working day. If this happened to all our users, then we could be losing up to £9000 ($12470) while waiting for Adobe to update the payment!

Why does it take 24 hours to update payment? Your support team said even if they expedited it, which may or may not work, it would still take at least 5-6 hours (which would not be before the end of the working day, so useless).

As a business owner, I have to protect the company from risk and I feel that Adobe has put companies in a terribly risky position by ransoming access to their software like this. It would and could not happen with the previous disk-based versions.

Even your support team agreed with me that this was not good customer server. I have to say that I am shocked that we could have been put in a position of having no access to the software for 24 hours+.

Had I been on vacation and not seen the email about Adobe being unable to take payment, we could have lost even more money. Strangely enough, we later received an invoice on email saying that the subscription had been paid, this was obviously wrong.

I am writing this not only for our benefit but for all your other business customers who could easily end up in this position.

– Here's my suggestion:

I understand that you do not wish to provide access to your software if it's not been paid for, but I think you need some contingency for this situation. 

1. What is the use of sending a non-payment email on a Friday night which cuts off your customers on a Monday morning? Especially business customers. You need more time here. You clearly haven't accounted for weekends. This is crucial. Take payment further in advance maybe?

2. 24 hours to update card details? That is crazy. But unless you can make it within the hour, then there's no point in reducing it.

3. The inability of your support team to provide access to the software in these situations (when trial periods have elapsed) is probably the other crucial area where you can improve this process. 1-2 days grace periods when payments are waiting to go through or 1-2 days extensions to the trail period, should be within the capability of the support team. Again, especially for business. 

– Summing up: 

When I called support, they told me there was nothing they could do to help. That is the policy. 

If we had been a large organisation with say 100+ users, I'm sure Adobe would be doing something about it more quickly.

The move to a cloud model was your choice Adobe, not ours. You need to make it work for business. You cannot leave companies in a position where they can lose huge amounts of revenue simply because card payment didn't go through. It is simply irresponsible. This can happen for all sorts of reasons (expiration, fraud blocking, lost & cancelled card). We can also very easily miss the non-payment warning email, for example, if on vacation or it goes into the Junk folder etc. 

It seems that it is far too easy to end up in this predicament and you currently have no contingency for addressing it quickly.

This must be resolved. You cannot hold companies over a barrel like this.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Kind Regards
Pete Jacobs
Photo of WeRU


  • 1 Post
  • 0 Reply Likes

Posted 3 years ago

  • 1
Photo of Jeffrey Tranberry

Jeffrey Tranberry, Sr. Product Manager, Digital Imaging

  • 14678 Posts
  • 1957 Reply Likes
Hi Peter,

Sorry for your trouble. Let me look into this issue with management.